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Accountability Chart Vs. Organizational Chart

Written by Ed Callahan on January 24, 2011

Implementers EOS Business Owner Accountability Organization Business

If you’re like most small to medium size entrepreneurial companies, you’ve probably tried to visually display how your company is structured or organized. So what’s the best way to do that – with an accountability chart or an organizational chart? What’s the difference?

Organizational charts are a waste of time, particularly for small to medium businesses. OK, maybe not a complete waste of time. But they are not as useful as they should be.

It's vitally important in all companies that everyone knows who is accountable for what. Whether there is a customer service problem or there is no toilet paper in the facility you don't want your employees guessing who owns the problem.

Some responsibilities are clear - sales for example. But some aren't.

Who decides whether to fund a major new project? The CFO (if one exists) or the owner or both? Who owns managing the outsourced website design team? The marketing director or the engineering manager? Who decides what commission rates to pay? The VP of Sales or the CFO or the Owner?

How much time gets wasted because of this accountability knowledge gap?

How many goals don't get accomplished on time because no one is driving them?

There should be only one owner for all major responsibilities and everyone should understand who owns what. After all, if everyone is responsible then no one is responsible. An organizational chart with roles and responsibilities clarified is called an accountability chart. Conclusion – an accountability chart is much more useful and valuable than an organizational chart. The added clarity will help your company grow.

How are you clarifying accountability in your company? Tell us about it.

If you haven’t already done so, visit the downloadable tools area of this site for a sample accountability chart. Contact me if you want some help setting up your accountability chart.

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